What does it mean to be human? What is the goal of earthly existence? What brings us ultimate happiness? It is in our very nature to yearn for God, to be in relationship with God. This year’s seminar from 16-29 October given by Fr Michael Casey ocso in Nunraw Abbey, Scotland searched these and other related questions of monastic anthropology through delving into the writings handed down in monastic tradition by thinkers such as Evagrius and Augustine, and twelfth century Cistercians such as Aelred of Rievaulx and Bernard of Clairvaux.
An excursion to Melrose Abbey, the first Cistercian monastery to be founded in Scotland in 1136 aswell as to Lindisfarne also took place mid way through the seminar. (see photo: Abbot Mark at Melrose Abbey).
This two week course, intended to “comfort and to challenge” its participants, brought us much illumination and encouragement too, aswell as good discussion, good humour and plenty of material to ponder over the winter ahead as we continue our monastic commitment in search of wholeness in Christ, the fullness of humanity.
Michael Casey’s new book exploring the Prologue of the Rule of St Benedict is currently due for publication.